124 cold-chain food producers across 21 markets have suspended exports to China: customs official
Published: Jan 14, 2021 03:31 PM

A staff member sprays disinfectant on the package of imported cold chain food at a regional cold chain center in Wuhan, capital of central China's Hubei Province, Jan. 7, 2021.Photo:Xinhua

To guard against the risk of imported COVID19 infections through cold-chain food storage, around 124 cold-chain food producers in 21 countries have so far suspended their exports to China, among the 124 cold-chain food producers that have been suspended from export to China, 107 companies voluntarily suspended their exports according to the General Administration of Customs on Thursday, confirming the government's strict stance on the prevention and control of the epidemic spreading.

As of Wednesday midnight, 13.17 million pieces of imported cold-chain food packages had been disinfected across the ports in the country. A total of 1,295,692 samples were collected and tested by the customs nationwide, 47 of which were positive for nucleic acid, while the other samples returned negative results, Chinese customs spokesman Li Kuiwen told a press conference on Thursday.

Imported cold-chain food has come under close scrutiny following rising numbers of reported cases since June last year, when the novel coronavirus was detected on a chopping board used by a seller of imported salmon at Xinfadi market in Beijing, leading to a nationwide suspension of imported salmon.

After that, at least 16 provincial-level regions in China detected coronavirus on imported cold-chain food or their packaging, prompting many cities across the country to implement strict disinfection measures on imported cold chain food to prevent a renewed COVID-19 outbreak.  

Chinese customs have taken the emergency preventive measures of suspending the import declaration for one week to four weeks for the overseas food production enterprises that are found to be positive.

Emergency preventive measures have been taken against 39 overseas food production and marketing units, said Li told a press conference on Thursday. 

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